This recipe is intended to be extremely flexible, an open-sourced meatball if you will. The only necessities are your ground meat of choice, pine nuts, and crushed/blenderized tomatoes
- One pound of ground meat of choice. Beef, veal, lamb, and even turkey work just fine. Simply a matter of personal preference.
- Two eggs, beaten (I pulse them for about 5 seconds in my Magic Bullet, emphasis on Magic)
- 1/2 cup of pine nuts (also known as Pignoli nuts)
- 1 to 2 cups of assorted grated or shredded veggies. I used a mixture of what I had in my veggie bin (cauliflower, zucchini, and red onion).
- 1 to 2 cups of crushed tomatoes.
- About 4 heaping handfulls of fresh spinach
- Shred or grate your assorted vegetable until you fill a small bowl with about 2 cups of a vegetable mixture. Hand toss well.
- Add in your 2 beaten eggs to the vegetable mix and stir well. Make sure the veggies are completely coated by the egg. Press this mixture down into the bowl and let it sit for a minute or two.
- Your shredded/grated vegetables and egg mixture should look something like this.
- Place ground meat of choice into a large mixing bowl and use a wooden spoon to break it apart evenly.
- Add your egg and vegetable mixture to the ground meat. Time to get hands on. Use your hands to fully mix the ingredients. Roll the mixture over itself many times as if you were kneading dough. Press the mixture down into the bowl to form one large meat patty.
Time to roll your meatballs. I prefer to roll them to a size slightly larger than a golf ball. Make sure you cup your hands to make sure the meatballs are packed tightly.
- Use just enough of your crushed tomatoes to cover the bottom of your crock pot / slow cooker. You should only see red at the bottom now.
- Cover the tomatoes with 2 handfulls of spinach, you should now see only green at the bottom.
- Line your meatballs around the crock pot, they should be slightly touching the sides. Form a ring around the pot and place the extra meatballs inside to form a second ring.
- Spoon just enough crushed tomatoes to fill the small gaps between the meatballs. Do not cover the meatballs.
- Cover the meatballs with another 2 large handfulls of spinach, again you should only see green. Sprinkle any extra pine nuts on top of the Spinach.
- Place the cover on your crock pot / slow cooker and set the timer for 3 to 4 hours on high or 5 to 6 hours on low.
This is always go-to recipe for me. Sometimes I make meatballs, other times I make a loaf. It’s really hard to choose the wrong vegetables to add in, and its a great way to use up some veggie bits before they go to waste. I am also a big fan of pine nuts, and in this case they add a great textural component to something that is often a single consistency. Oh, and the spinach comes out lovely too. I bet you’ll eat the top layer before you plate the meatballs. Hope you all enjoy this one as much as I do!
As always, if you cook one of your recipes, plate it up and post a picture to our FaceBook wall: www.facebook.com/paleopot